Ceramics

Curriculum & Classes

Class descriptions

Major studio course list (PDF)

Descriptions of elective courses below:

Digital Design and Fabrication for the Artist         

This course will explore art-related applications for digital modeling and manufacture, including the production of models for molds, plans for large-scale works and installations, tools and guides for assisting low-tech processes, and finished objects. Students will learn various 3-D modeling strategies using free and easy-to-use software. Computer-driven technologies for the fabrication of works will be explored, including 3-D printing, 3-D scanning, laser cutting and CNC machining. Students will be encouraged to develop individual ideas and artistic goals, building on ideas initiated in their major studios. A laptop for use in class is required: Windows 7, OSX 10.6 or higher.

3-D Modeling & Ceramic Media

This course will teach students to create actual "works" using 3-D modeling software. The class will be divided into two sections. In the first section students will learn Rhino, a 3-D modeling program, to create simple objects that are reflective of their studio practice and approach to art. In the second section of the course students will learn the mold-making skills necessary to render their creations into ceramic media. An introduction to slip casting and finishing techniques using slips and glazes will be covered as well. Students will be encouraged to experiment and expand on the techniques introduced in both sections of the class and develop individual ideas and artistic goals. 

Fundamentals of Glass: Kiln Forming

This introductive and investigative glass class will explore four methods of forming: glassdrawing, reverse relief casting, fusing and slumping. The flat glass format encourages students to explore with "drawing" materials of colored powders, fluxing, frits, stringers, and sheet glass. The reverse casting and slumping methods are more complex; a basic knowledge of sculpting, mold-making and strong technical skills are recommended. Both components develop an understanding of material, equipment, and firing cycles. Students are required to demonstrate a strong work ethic and a passionate pursuit for investigating personal artistic strengths and goals throughout the semester.

Advanced Glass: Kiln Forming                     

This course is open to students who have completed the Fundamentals of Glass: Kiln Forming elective. It is an advanced class for students who wish conduct an intensive personal investigation in the medium and its methods. To enroll in this course students must seek permission from the instructor and write a proposal for their semester’s work in advanced glass methods.

Fundamentals of Ceramic Art

Fundamentals of Ceramic Art will give students the basic skills necessary to produce, glaze, and fire ceramic forms. Students will be introduced via instructor demonstrations and presentations to a variety of skills including clay and glaze preparation; wheel-throwing, mold making, and slip-casting; glazing options; and firing processes. Students will be encouraged to create individual and original ideas in ceramics media, and to develop a personal methodology and artistic direction which may complement the work in their major. Students have frequent individual critiques with the instructor. Formal group peer reviews are conducted two or three times during the semester.

Studio To Market: A Ceramic Design and Marketing Course
 

Students will engage in a linear design process, beginning with concept and concluding with a sale-ready ceramic object.  Our focus will be applied to researching, conceiving, creating, pricing, branding, packaging, transporting, and presenting the objects for market.  Each stage from inception to commerce will be investigated, with a study of potential venues from the Internet to wholesale shows and retail boutiques. By dissecting the process, the class will discover strategies that are recurrent in industry, collectives, and the personal studio. Students will research contemporary practitioners and entrepreneurs, and will participate in field trips to the studios of Kansas City designers and makers who have successfully navigated a career in the production and trade of ceramic objects. 

This Is Place 

This course will take a holistic approach to exploring the broad meanings and implications of place through the individual and collaborative completion of studio assignments. We will explore historical and contemporary sculpting techniques in clay, focusing on the versatility and ubiquity of ceramics in contemporary culture. Students will be asked to analyze and respond to many different interpretations of place, including but not limited to the natural environment, an occupied area or part of a building, a relative position in society, or a state of mind. We will look to writers and artists who work with site specificity and “sense of place” as these ideas relate to the investigation of identity, culture and competition.
 
Students will have the opportunity to make public and personal work for traditional and non-traditional spaces. We will balance our conceptual and technical investigation of place and the ceramic medium in a partnership with DeLaSalle Education Center, where we will be working closely with high school ceramics classes. Through this partnership, students will have the unique opportunity to make work for permanent installation in or on DeLaSalle School grounds.

Class schedules and course requirements

For a list of class schedules, click here.

For a list of major academic requirements, click here.

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